Wipeout: Create & Crash (Video Game Review)

Wipeout: Create & Crash is the newest release for developer Behaviour Interactive and publisher Activision. The last time the duo teamed up, fans were treated to the free downloadable title Doritos Crash Course 2, which turned out to be a surprisingly fun title. As for where the Wipeout series left off, fans were tricked into purchasing Wipeout 3 as a Nintendo Wii U launch title that was scarier to play than any Halloween costume you'll see this year. With Wipeout: Create & Crash, the team is hoping to capture some of the magic that makes the Crash Course series such a fun title while redeeming the Wipeout video game franchise before its too late. The result is a game that is definitely a huge improvement over its predecessors and a new release worth playing while snacking on some trick or treat candy for Halloween.

Wipeout: Create & Crash sees the return of hosts John Anderson and John Henson. The two hosts are voiced by their real life personalities, so there is plenty of humor to enjoy from them throughout the game. Fans of the ABC show will appreciate the attention to detail when recreating the presentation of Wipeout in the game, but if listening to commentating pre-match isn't your thing, or if you've already heard the dialogue before, you now have the option to skip all of the talking and jump straight into the game session. It's important to listen to the rules of each game, though it typically only requires the person doesn't fall and make a splash throughout the obstacle course.

Course design has been dramatically improved for Wipeout: Create & Crash since the last game in the series. There are 12 episodes in total, and each has its own theme such as Wilder West, Forest of Mayhem and Zombie Halloween. There are many different obstacles included in the game that take on a variety of different shapes from spinning logs to giant pointed fingers, and each course feels different from the last this time around. Dodging incoming items aren't the only obstacle for players though; there are plenty of swinging ropes, balance beams, conveyor belts, and of course, giant red balls. The difference in themes and overall design of courses in Wipeout: Create & Crash is enormously improved since Wipeout 3 and one of the biggest reasons players will be more apt to try the new release.

The different episodes typically feature a few different events with a central theme that determines everything about the obstacle course before beginning the episode. Zombie Halloween, for example, features plenty of spooky ghosts floating around the stage, jack-o-lanterns hanging from the ceiling and giant eyeballs that replace the bouncy red balls the gameshow is known for. Completing an event will earn some in-game currency, medals and other perks based on the performance, so it's important to quickly make it through the course without having too many Wipeouts. There are plenty of unlockables included in Wipeout: Create & Crash, so players will keep coming back to play the game long after completing each episode for the first time.

Players will need to choose a character to use in the game from a list of installed models, or create their own. Creating characters is a lot of fun and one of the only features from the last release that didn't need too much improvement. There are a wide range of costumes, clothes and accessories available to choose from including normal t-shirts and pants to animal costumes and funny hats. A lot of the items available in the game need to be unlocked by completing episodes, but all players can earn currency in sessions to continue customizing their characters. There are also unlockable characters included in Wipeout: Create & Crash as well, if you just want to quickly change your character and get back into the game.

The biggest new feature included in Wipeout: Create & Crash is the all new Create a Course mode. Players can build their own custom Wipeout courses here or create multiple courses to make up an entire episode. Players only start the game with a few basic tools and items, but more obstacles are unlockable from the game's menus to give loads of replay value to the new release. Once a course has been created, players can team up and test is out to see how it works in offline sessions. Though Wipeout: Create & Crash doesn't support online multiplayer, gamers can enter codes into the Course Creator to unlock seeds to share with friends and see who is the best player at certain custom courses created in the game. A lot of time we spent with the game for the review was in the Create a Course mode, so it's definitely easy to lose track of time while creating and testing courses with this new feature.

The physics in the game seem a bit better this time around, though there are still some problems. Characters seem to react more accurately to the different variety of obstacles in the game, and a nice mixture of obstacles alleviates the repetition the last release suffered from. Jumping on the big red balls is still just as unpredictable as ever, so don't expect to ever fully master the game, though it's starting to seem like a design choice to have so many problems with certain obstacles rather than it being a flaw. It would be nice to see better implementation of some obstacles still, since half of them are nearly impossible to fail and the others are nearly impossible to practice for. Other problems arise from the game's design choices such as one that makes snow fall in Winter stages and creates unintentional obstacles rather than making a cool effect for players.

Wipeout: Create & Crash doesn't look that much better than Wipeout 3, but there are plenty of different aesthetic designs and course themes included in the game that makes the new release much more diverse than the games that came before it. Character models have been improved in the new release, and there are more costumes for customized characters. The 12 episodes are nice too, and with so many different themed worlds, Wipeout: Create & Crash feels like a much larger game for the money spent to purchase it. There are some poor camera controls in the game that prevent players from accurately telling where they are in correlation with obstacles sometimes, but this does increase the difficulty of the game a bit, something the title surely needs to please the older gamers among us. It really ends up not being too big of a deal anyhow, since every player in the game will find the same troubles in throughout the competition.

Wipeout: Create & Crash is the best release for the Wipeout series hands-down. The game improves the variety of obstacles, adds a custom course editor and packs plenty of unlockable content to keep players interested in playing the game for many hours. The 12 episodes provide a lot of variety for players accustomed to running though the same default courses, and new obstacles create fun courses even for longtime fans of the game series. Zombie Zed wants you to pick up Wipeout: Create & Crash just in time for Halloween, and for the first time in a long time, buying a copy of a new Wipeout game isn't a bad idea.

Wipeout: Create & Crash is now available from all major retailers for the MSRP of $39.99 on Xbox 360 and Nintendo Wii U and $29.99 on Nintendo Wii and Nintendo 3DS. Wipeout: Create & Crash is rated E by the ESRB for Alcohol Reference, Comic Mischief & Mild Cartoon Violence. For more information on the game, check out the official Wipeout: Create & Crash website.

Game Features:
Offline Multiplayer 1-4
Create a Course
New Course Themes
Kinect Support
Achievement Support

Game Information:
Developer: Behaviour Interactive
Publisher: Activision
Platforms: Xbox 360 (reviewed), Nintendo Wii U, Nintedo Wii & Nintendo 3DS
Release Date: October 15, 2013

Score: 7.5 out of 10

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